Development of the Institute (1995-2008)
The current Fraunhofer MEVIS institute was founded on the initiative of mathematician Prof. Dr. Heinz-Otto Peitgen in August 1995 as MeVis – Center for Medical Diagnostic Systems and Visualization, a non-profit limited liability company (gGmbH) at the University of Bremen. To expand the institute, MeVis received yearly funding from the State of Bremen. Prof. Peitgen was appointed Executive Director of MeVis, and an international Scientific Advisory Board oversaw research. In 2006, the institute was renamed MeVis Research GmbH, Center for Medical Image Computing.
Since 1997, MeVis Research has produced several legally and financially independent spin-offs that were consolidated in 2007 into MeVis Medical Solutions AG, a publicly traded company that employs about 140 people today. Aside from a few temporary declines in staff due to changes in personnel caused by the founding of a new company, the number of employee steadily increased between the founding in August 1995 and integration into the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in January 2009. During this time, the number of employees has increased from 10 to 51 full-time positions.
Within a period of 13 years, MeVis evolved from a small group of visionary people into an internationally recognized R&D center for medical image computing. Embedded in a worldwide network of clinical and academic partners, MeVis has taken a pioneering role in developing real-world software solutions for image-supported early detection, diagnosis, and therapy. From the outset, the conceptual orientation of the institute was guided by a strong engagement with medical needs and clinical processes. Two outstanding examples for groundbreaking work with clinical impact are MeVis‘ achievements in breast cancer screening and liver surgery planning. A detailed description of the early phase of MeVis can be found in the German report MeVis – The First Ten Years.